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Zune HD Due In Fall

Microsoft’s next-generation Zune portable media player (PMP) will be the company’s first Zune with touchscreen, full Web browser, HD Radio and HD video storage, the company confirmed.

The new device, called Zune HD, will be available in the fall. It will continue to offer Wi-Fi to download and stream music directly from the Zune Web site. Pricing and storage capacities weren’t announced.

The company also said it will extend Zune movie and TV downloads to the Xbox Live Video Marketplace in the fall.

Zune HD will come with 3.3-inch 16:9 OLED touchscreen with 480 by 272 resolution and an interface that lets users flick through songs, movies and other content. The device stores 720p HD video, which can be output to an HD display via planned docking stations that incorporate HDMI output. Although 720p video files play on the device, it is down-scaled to fit the Zune display.

The Zune is the first HD Radio-equipped portable audio device to be announced. It can tagg songs heard onHD Radio or the analog-FM tuner for later purchase from the Zune Web site.